According to the Credit Suisse 2018 Global Wealth Databook, 34 million American adults are among the WORLD’S POOREST 10%. How is that possible? In a word, debt. In more excruciating words: stifling, misery-inducing, deadly amounts of debt for the poorest Americans. And it goes beyond dollars to the “deaths of despair” caused by the stresses of inferior health care coverage, stagnating incomes, and out-of-control inequality. Numerous sources report on the rising debt for the poor half of America, especially for the lowest income group, and largely because of health care and education costs. Since 2008 consumer debt has risen almost 50 percent. The percentage of families with more debt than savings is higher now than at any time since 1962.